So a whole shedload of Welsh teachers went on strike yesterday, along with driving test examiners and all kinds of other public sector workers. Apparently their 2.4% rise is tantamount to a pay cut when you take into account the rise in GDP.
Fair enough. I have no idea what a teacher's average wage is so I'll trust them when they say it's not enough. But two things annoys me about this strike, one personal and one not. The latter annoyance is the timing of the strike - just before exams start. Kids who need every possible second of school time to prepare for their exams (because let's be honest - they won't be studying that much at home!) are sent home for the day because their teacher is at the picket line. The pay increase was announced in January - why couldn't they have gone on strike earlier? It's like the Metropolitan Police going on strike on May Day or the Fire Brigade going on strike on 5th November.
I hope that Year 11 teachers thought long and hard about whether to attend those classes or stay out all day - from the news reports it seems that at least some Year 11 teachers did turn up even though they supported the strike - good for them.
The other annoyance is personal - new teachers get a starting salary of £24k (more than me) and get 12 weeks holiday a year (much more than me) - when do I get to strike!